Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) | Southern Tier Brewing Company

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Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)
3,081 Ratings
Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)

Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by John on 02-24-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,081 |  Reviews: 1,225
Photo of SpdKilz
3.92/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to mattolesh for this great extra. Cheers!

Appearance - Pours a clear copper color into my SA Perfect Pint with about a finger of slight tan head that dissipates rather quickly but leaves good lacing.

Smell - Sweet, tropical citrus notes permeate the first sniff I take. Pineapple, apricot, some mango perhaps. Sweet malts, and just a hint of piney hops.

Taste - A heavy sweet malt (read caramel) character is immediately apparent. There is definitely tropical citrus notes, and just a hint of hop bitterness. After a few sips there is quite a bit of oak flavor that I notice. While I do enjoy the tropical notes, there is such heavy sweetness here...almost a nougat flavor? that I can't thoroughly enjoy this. I need at least a hint more of hops/piney/bitterness. This is just way too sweet.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, relatively syrupy, low carbonation.

Drinkability - For how high ABV this is, it is actually quite drinkable. However, as stated, it is a bit too sweet for me. Still glad I was able to try it.

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Photo of berley31
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured with a moderate-, off-white head that has fairly good lasting power, before settling to 1/4-finger. Body is a dark copper color, and hazy.

S: Strong, fruity aroma... pineapple in particular sticks out the most.

T: For the ABV, this is a very smooth DIPA. The fruitiness (pineapple, again) starts off, followed by a very bitter and dry finish. However, the alcohol is barely detectable, and overall it's quite smooth and opens up even more as it warms.

M: Medium-bodied, fairly creamy, with average carbonation. Just a hint of alcohol warmth.

D: Too easy-drinking for the ABV... be careful with this one! Quite enjoyable, especially for those who prefer fruitier DIPAs to earthy or piney.

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Photo of scottyshades
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Tryst in Delray Beach for $2 during happy hour

A: Pours an amber orange with a massive creamy and fluffy head. Retention is excellent, but not quite as good as the bottled version

S: Caramel malts, brown sugar, and tons of earthy, fruity, bitter, and floral hops. This is one of the few beers that actually smells bitter

T: Solid bitter sweet bite. Hops are floral and resinous. Malts give caramel, toffee, and a sweet underlying base. The draught version has more honey and sweetness than I remember, and the hops have a similar bite.

MF/D: Full body, low carbonation, lingering honey finish, very sticky feel

Notes: a little more balanced on-tap, and definitely more drinkable

(mobile review)

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Photo of siradmiralnelson
3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz bottle into Globe glass.

A. 2 finger foamy head. Color is dark orange. Good lacing. Good retention.

S. Piney hops, some hops. Caramel malt. Alcohol, some toffee. Maybe a little pineapple and grapefruit.

T. Taste is sweet malt. A little bit of hops. Not very bitter. Tastes as if the hops have mellowed significantly.

M. Medium bodied. Medium carbonation. Fairly sweet afterstaste.

D. Tastes like a weak barleywine. Not very hoppy. Hopefully better when it is more fresh. Not a DIPA that holds up very well.

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Photo of Clydesdale
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a slightly hazy burnt orange color. The tall, orange-tinted head has a fairly dense whipped and frothy texture. Retention is very persistent, and a dense smattering of sticky lace adheres to the glass.

S: Some brown sugar and caramel pop up in the nose before being overwhelmed by hoppy aromas. Citrus character is foremost, with vibrant notes of grapefruit and orange juice. Lesser notes of pine, herbal spice, tropical fruit, and freshly cut grass. For 11% abv, I don't catch much more than a hint of alcohol.

T: A sturdy but unassuming malt presence up front. Some moderate caramel flavor, with some brown sugary and honeylike hints. Hop bitterness is firm and long-lasting. Hoppy flavors of pine resin, citrus (grapefruit and orange rind), and a biting herbal/spicy presence. A bit of alcoholic heat, but it's well-hidden for such a hefty brew.

M: Medium-full body. A bit oily/resiny. Carbonation is impressively soft, lending a smooth, appealing mouthfeel. A definite dryness into the finish.

D: A focused, well-rounded DIPA from Southern Tier. This shows some impressive craftsmanship, even though nothing exactly blows me away. I like that this manages to present so many different hop flavors while remaining coherent and enjoyable. How they managed to hide 11% abv is a mystery to me, but this is one drinkable beer.

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Photo of biegaman
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer has two clear stand-out features: a toasty, glossy coppered shine and a fuzzy, pulpous head. The beer's colourful body may distort clarity but it does not disallow it; the complexion, seemingly light's best friend, bounces and shimmers. The foam, which is plastered to the glass as much as the beer, is tremendously broad in its scope.

With Double IPAs, you might as well just throw things like "balance" and "easy drinkability" right out the window. The name of the game is hops and Southern Tier plays it arguably better than anyone. The aroma is piquant, it's a booze and resin soaked fire ball of fresh green lupullin, toast and honey, citrus rinds, tree sap and festered tropical fruits.

The mouthfeel is incredibly smooth for a beer calculated out to be a palate-shattering 153 bittering units and a whooping 11% alcohol by volume. It is so smooth, in fact, that these bombers, their herculean stats notwithstanding, disappear at the pace of a bottle half their size, a beer half their strength. And it's one offering I can never tired of.

The flavour doubles as both an endurance test and a game for the palate: can you handle a whole bottle of such an intense, flavourful beer and, if so, how many flavours can you name? I've had plenty of training and practice at this and to date I can list caramel dipped pine needles, toasted biscuits, exotic fruits and their rinds and shots of lychee liqueur.

The pineapple, peach, mango and grapefruit flavours are all greatly appreciated, but it's that taste (and smell) of lychee liqueur that really stands out to my palate. There isn't so much flavour that the alcohol can't be noticed, but there is enough to ignore it. The malts are both sugary-sweet and crisply toasted; the mouthfeel, as result, is firm and chewy.

Having to chose a favourite DIPA is hard; having to chose my favourite Southern Tier hop-bomb is even harder! Un*Earthly, fantastic as it is, has stiff competition with Hoppe, 2XIPA, Big Red, Backburner, Iniquity, Pumking to name just the heavy hitters (nevermind the IPA, Hop Sun or Harvest Ale!) Ya, this brewery knows hops, they do hops well.

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Photo of Seanibus
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy copper with a very dense head. Aroma is soapy and sweet, with a nice hop sting. The flavor is strong and sweet, with a powerful blast of brown sugar and some limey hops. The bitterness comes in low and inside, like a sneaky citrus punch. The alcohol is sharp and strong, like vodka. The mouthfeel is slick and thick.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.8/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden tinged brown color, clean and clear with a nice cap of off-white head. Decent retention and minimal sticky lacing. Scent is a muddled combination of carmel, earthy and floral hops with a background of light grapefruit, pine and citrus. First taste is a rather bitter bite of hops - earthy, floral are dominant with pine and citrus in the rear. Strong toffee, carmel and bready malt backbone, slightly sweet. Fuller side of medium body, oily and thick, minimal bitter aftertaste. A good dIPA that leans more towards the malty sweet end and the hops are slightly muddled.

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Photo of rootbeerman
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured into allagash tulip

A: pours light brown with dark tan half finger head
S: strong floral and earthy hops, sweet malt.
T: sweet malt, just a little bready earthy floral hops along with a light lemon citrus.
M: sort of thick, smooth medium carbonation.
D: good smooth and easy, went good with my steak dinner.

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Photo of pootz
3.62/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Pours an amber orange with an off-white cap...fair retention.

Nose is of caramel malt sweetness under grapefruit hops, some mustiness.

Flavor profile has chewy bready malts balanced with resinous hops but there are some pit fruit esters to make some light complexity;grape fruit , citrus rinds, some earthyness,,,gets bitter mid palate but this drops off in the finish.

Decent double IPA, I'm of the view this style is over worked and it takes a goo DIPA to keep me interested....this one lost me halfway through the bottle.

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Photo of cvaypai
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber to new belgium globe glass.

Appearance - Poured with a fluffy, foamy, offwhite slightly brown 2 finger head. Leaves a beautiful lacing down the sides of the glass and the head lasts a good amount. Pours a translucent orangey-amber with beautiful golds when held up to light.

Smell - I can smell this from feet away, very aromatic and pungent. Smells very resionous and fruity, some grapefruit. Lots of pine come through also. A tiny bit of sweet malts can be found, along with a tiny whiff of alcohol. Again very pungent and resiny.

Taste - Very delicious, very bitter and lots of pine. Like the nose indicated very resiny. Some fruity flavors can be found, not as much as I would have though. Has a grassy and earthy taste. Ironic because of the name. Maybe a chase of rye and a bit of sweet caramel malts.

Mouthfeel - Very sticky, this one simply has a great mouthfeel. Superb for the style, just the right weight, it doesn't seem thin or thick, just right. The carbonation is right where it should be. It's sticky yet smooth, very odd.

Drinkability - This bomber will be gone in no time. Extremely drinkable, especially for a cooler night like tonight. I could probably attempt a second bomber, it would be a feat due to the stickyness, but the one will be no challenge.

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Photo of Quej
4.56/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer looks like an innocent pale ale, and is anything but. As soon as the bottle is opened a massively hoppy smell finds your nose. The strength of the beer is hidden well by its bitterness and the aromatic hops. It has a malty taste that supports the heavy hop usage and makes it dangerously drinkable for a beer in its alcohol range. At 20$ a bottle, it's almost worth it. Another great offering from Southern Tier.

It's called Un-earthly, and it is.

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Photo of jpittman80
4.24/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Slightly hazy dark copper, two fingers of off-white head that leaves good lacing. Typical of the wheat and Carapils.

S - Pineapple, mango, apricot, piney hops balance with the carapils aroma.

T - Robust caramel malt character that sits behind the tropical characteristics listed above. Some pine flavor. Good amount of bitterness. All in all, good balance.

M - Smooth medium body with soft carbonation. A dry finish and a little astringency.

D - Well, I can't really detect any alcohol, it drinks really fast, and it's delicious. The only thing is that some people may think it's too sweet.

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Photo of LittleCreature
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - 3.5
Thin, light beige head quickly disappeared over a hazy deep, rusty amber body.

Smell - 4.5
Hop juice with a spoonful of caramel. Aromas of sweet fumey alcohol, rich caramel, marmalade, apricot, pine needles and a little mint.

Taste - 4.0
Big, hoppy and strongly alcholic. Caramel sweetness is heavy, but more than compensated by the pine, stewed fruit, citrus peel and mint from the hops. Very bitter but well balanced overall with warming alcohol.

Mouthfeel - 4.0
Fine carbonation, full bodied and quite syrupy which I will forgive in such a big beer.

Drinkability - 4.0
I could drink two in a sitting no problem and I'd enjoy it too!

This is a BIG DIPA. I tend to prefer something nearer 9% and more attenuated, but for what it is, this is a very nice beer.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear orange color with a large off-white head. The aroma is strong citrus hops. The flavor is citrus hops with some pine in there as well. There is a nice bready malt backbone. Medium bitterness. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

I have now had Unearthly, Hoppe and Gemini and liked Gemini the best of all of them, even though it is a 50-50 blend of the other two.

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Photo of billshmeinke
3.18/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a "fluted" glass as the bottle recommends (in this case a white wine glass).

One finger white head. Amber with some honey in color. Spotty foam resides to a ring of foam around the glass with a patch in the middle. Head tightness and retention are good.

Smells of honey and toffee. Floral hops, mint and zesty citrus.

Taste is of honey, toffee, bitter resin, dank, and zest. Hops come through as mostly floral, there is spearmint in there as well. Nice bitterness, but pretty malt forward.

Fairly thick and full bodied. Tight aggressive carbonation. Big hop bite on the end.

A solid east coast DIPA. Hard to get through a bottle.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.77/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Again the only way to enjoy ST around here is to find it cheap on tap. Paid 5.50 for a 10oz pour.
A - Light amber in color with an inch of stick white head.
S - Ow wow the glorious citrus and grapefruit hops tickle the nose with a malty backbone.
T - OMG was the best imperial IPA I ever had! This stuff would be a nightmare if you had a couple of bombers but it went down way too quick and for a big hoppy beer it was really balance. Loved every drop.
M - Dry but drinkable this brew was the perfect texture.
D - Must... have... more before the keg taps out I hope to have it again at Smoking Joe's but maybe I will drop 10-11 dollars on a bottle. It's that damn good.

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Photo of Vincenzo839
4.67/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was really amazing. I originally had it in a 22oz. bottle and was extremely impressed, but then got a keg for my home kegerator and it is even better. For starters let's start with the alcohol. It is almost not noticeable until you have 3 pints, and you are finding it difficult to think clearly.

The taste is nothing short of spectacular. Strong, leafy hop flavors almost overpower my senses. A slightly fruity bitterness explodes from the start and lasts until the end of each pint. Toasty malt underlies the massive hop assault. A juicy bitterness and tonnes of hop aroma make for a never ending finish. Another pleasant suprise is the lack of head that comes out with every pint, maximum of 1 finger.

All in all I say that this beer is remarkable. I am anxiously waiting for the local store to get the Iniquity, Big Red and new Farmers Tan. I need to add them all to my kegerator ASAP.

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Photo of Gobzilla
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22oz bomber courtesy of malthegal thanx again mallory

A: poured a nice caramel hue into my tulip with a half finger of head which had some good sticky lacing.

S: nice sweet malts up front with candy notes and slight faint hops. after a couple whiffs I also get a little caramel in it as well.

T: nice piney caramel flavor but it seems to me that it's more malty than it is hoppy, I got slight bitterness at the back end of a sip. As it sits it starts to get more bitter.

M: meduim body with very little carbonation.

D: I think if it was fresh it would probably have more of a hoppy punch. I was hoping for a hop bomb but I guess we only have them on the west coast.

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Photo of scottyb88
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-pours a dark clear copper color with a lot of carbonation and a huge rocky off-white head that never disappeared; great lacing

S-a little hard to detect at times but I got a lot of pine, oak, and a faint smell of peach or tangerine

T-very similar to the smell; the oak was more predominant than I was expecting; I wonder what the oak-aged version would be like; not as citrusy as other DIPAs, more on the pine-malt side of things

M-tongue bruiser up front with a malty earthiness at the end that left your mouth very drry

D-650ml at 11% will leave you a bit light-headed; its quite powerful but also quite good; a definite sipper, but also a great price at around $6.99 for a 650ml bottle

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Photo of jlindros
3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: A light fluffy 1 finger head forms over hazy orange honey colored beer.

N: Lots of chewy hops with sweet chewy malts. A little citrus and tangerine, somewhat heavy on the hops and sweet malts, but not over the top yet.

T: Lots of sweet chewy malts here, with more chewy citrus hops. Semi bitter with some spicy hops as well. Very sweet with a nougat like taste even. Way too sweet for me, as usual from Southern Tier. A slight floral hop flavor too.

M: Medium to light body with lower carbonation.

F: Bitter with a long astringent flavor that's not as pleasant as it was on the initial taste. Lots of lingering sweet malts, some nougat, citrus hops and a little pine, orange peel too. Long sweetness and astringent hops. A touch of warming booze on the finish as well.

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Photo of elgiacomo
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle, presumably mid-late April 2010. Labeled @ 11% ABV.

Pours slightly hazy orange/amber/copper with a light-orange head that is foamy and leaves some lacing.

Aroma is citrus, pine, earth, grass, some spiciness, some bread, quite strong with good complexity.

Flavor is bitter, resinous hops, earth, pine, light citrus, spice, with a good caramel malt backbone, moderate sweetness, but bitterness dominates, big and biting. Alcohol is quite present as well and adds to the biting finish. Starts to get awfully boozy and brash toward the last third of the bottle.

Mouthfeel is full, sticky, medium carbonation.

This is my first Southern Tier beer after wanting to try them for quite some time. A good example of the style, although too much booze knocks off a couple of tenths.

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Photo of wedgie9
3.62/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted from a 650mL bottle. Pours a clear orange amber with a one finger white head that quickly dissipates leaving some lacing. There isn't a whole lot going on with the nose. Some light malt with a light lemon and grapefruit citrus. On the palate, this beer is much more exciting. On the front of the palate, it tastes dangerously hoppy, but that quickly fades to show a very balanced IPA. There are some biscuit flavors, with just a hint of sweetness. The back of the palate is dominated by citrus rind notes. The carbonation is average, with an oily and coating palate and a long lasting bitter finish. This beer is very good. With how balanced this beer is, I would have never guessed that the alcohol would be so high. I would love to drink this beer again.

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Photo of ToasterChef
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I just picked this up at RSVP in Portland, ME. It's my first Southern Tier purchase since they began distribution in Maine. The bottle was warm, so I chilled it in the fridge for about 20-30 minutes before pouring it into my Smuttynose Big Beer Series goblet. The beer pours out with a big tan foam head. Some carbonation is rising in the liquid, which is translucent and has a beautiful rusty orange hue. Swirling the beer leaves a decent amount of lacework. This is a very pretty beer; nearly perfect for the style. The aroma is magnificent. Big, bready hops fill my nose. There is also some pine and malt sweetness. This smells like a hearty beer. The flavor begins with some light grassy hops as soon as the beer touches my lips. Big, artisanal bread malts make up the backbone of the beer; they appear next. On top of the malts are chunky, bitter hops. When I swallow, I can pick up a bit of the alcohol and a lot of bitterness. It is hot, sharp, and in your face. I like it a lot. There is hardly any sweetness, which is equally surprising and impressive. This is pretty full-bodied beer. It leaves a noticeable coat, but not as much as many beers that use the "Imperial" qualifier. There is average carbonation and some stickiness on my lips. The bitter oils can really be felt on my tongue. For a strong, hoppy beer, this is pretty drinkable. I wouldn't order round after round of Unearthly, but I certainly won't have any problems finishing all 22 ounces by myself. I'm really enjoying this brew. I think it offers great evidence that top DIPAs do not have to come from the Pacific time zone--us folks back east can work our hop magic as well. I'll certainly purchase this beer again.

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Photo of sk8man121
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into goblet.

A: Pours a bourbon-colored hue of orange with little to no head. Beautiful clarity to this beer. Similar in looks to DFH 90 Minute. Very nice.

S: Grapefruit, pine and faint spearmint fill the nose. Extremely refreshing smell, but surprisingly not very powerful.

M: VERY bitter as soon as it hits the palette. At first I thought it was too much, but as this beer warms a malty sweetness comes through and balances out the act. Alcohol is definitely present but drinks more like an 8% brew than the 11% that the bottle totes.

M: Silky, sticky, resiny - you get the idea. Carbonation is medium to low; it would be nice if it was a bit stronger, but it does help the malts come through. The bitter stickiness that this brew leaves behind is a bit distracting and not entirely enjoyable.

D: All in all, a pretty good beer. Bitter, yet nicely balanced. It certainly drinks as if it is far below 11%, but I'm not sure I'd want to quaff more than a bottle of this at a time.

Doesn't quite measure up to Iniquity, but a solid brew nonetheless.

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Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.07 out of 5 with 3,081 ratings